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Autoimmune Disorders & Night Sweats

At the first sign of the entrance of new bacteria or a virus, the body’s immune system immediately begins to work to eliminate the potential threats to your health. Symptoms of these frequently include fever and night sweats. However, in some cases, the immune system falsely identifies healthy cells as threats and works to eliminate them. This is known as an autoimmune disease, or autoimmune disorder. Such disorders can affect almost all parts of the body, including the nerves, muscles, skin, lungs, blood vessels, and the heart and brain. Inflammation is the key sign for an autoimmune disease which results in swelling, pain, and redness.

The National Institutes of Health, NIH, approximate nearly 24 million Americans suffer from an autoimmune issue. However, actual numbers are potentially upwards of 50 to 60 million people. The NIH only accounts for the 24 diseases with which in-depth epidemiological studies exist. Current research has identified almost 100 autoimmune diseases and research suggests that upwards of 40 more with a potentially autoimmune basis have yet to be classified and named. Most can be chronic and are often life-threatening.

Markers also indicate many of these diseases and disorders have a genetic component, explaining why autoimmune issues are commonly clustered across family members. Sometimes, for example, a virus can trigger an autoimmune reaction to a person’s predisposed genetic marker.

Furthermore, these diseases often span multiple medical specialties and organs. Compared to cancer (with 14 million people living in the United States) and heart disease (with data suggesting upwards of 20 million people living with it in the United States) the combined total is still smaller than the population living with an autoimmune disorder. Costs are estimated in the 100-billion-dollar range annually for treatments in the US alone.

Night sweats are symptoms of myriad autoimmune issues and often are signs of hidden infection. Many of the most common autoimmune diseases—Rheumatoid arthritis, Celiac disease, Lupus, Multiple sclerosis, etc.—all share night sweats, fever, and hot flashes as symptoms. As discussed above, the overlap of symptoms and bodily system crossover make diagnosing and managing autoimmune disorders difficult. Always consult a physician with any healthcare concern. Find more information about autoimmune disorders here.

13 replies
  1. Rebecca Crowningshield says:

    I have been suffering debilitating hot flashes/sweats and chills for years. I am currently having at least 2 each hour around the clock. So severe and always accompanied with nausea and mild panic as I look for air. I lose so much water through sweating that I often am plagued with muscle cramps as well. These is nothing like an estrogen related hot flash. I wish someone took me seriously and had anything to offer. I feel its a very real possibility it could be fatal under the right circumstances. There is a lot of unnecessary strain on the circulatory system for starters. Please tell me there is something that can help this?!

    • Alli Truttmann says:

      Hi Rebecca! Thank you for your commentary on this blog post. We hope that our messaging was educational and can help you come up with some ways to cope with your severe sweating and hot flashes. We always want to be a resource for our customers, in addition to providing a great product that works. But my biggest suggestion would be meeting with a physician to discuss your concerns. Maybe, together, you can come up with a treatment plan that incorporates physical and emotional treatments so you can get the rest that you deserve and need to preserve your health. Please feel free to email us personally at info@wickedsheets.com if you would like any additional information on Wicked Sheets or if I can help in any other way. Thanks and hang in there!!
      -Alli and the Wicked Sheets team

    • Debbie says:

      Hello Rebecca. I too suffer severely from hot flashes. And yes I’m in menopause but I take hormones to help with my symptoms and these hot flashes last anywhere from 20-45 minutes long sometimes longer. I’m getting bad cramps too. So I did increase the amount of water I’ve been drinking and I eat a banana daily for the potassium. This is terrible. When I tell my doctor about it. She blames it on the menopause. And my hormone levels done with a spit test are coming back normal. I don’t know what to do. I’m very frustrated. I was wondering if you got anywhere with this. Thank you. Debbie.

  2. Fiona says:

    I suffer from primary Sjogren’s Syndrome and, of late, I have been experiencing extreme chest sweating through the night. Also painless swollen lymph nodes. Thanks for the information on disorders and night sweats.
    Regards, Fiona.

    • Linda Whitfield says:

      I have Sjogren’s also.. so tired all the time.. It’s primary discomfort is pain in my body along with dry eyes and mouth.. no cure!

  3. Jahmeila says:

    Hello, I just read through your blog and found it very helpful. I have Lupus, and have been living with it for almost a year now. I have recently (within the past two months) starting having night sweats. The first time I was very scared because I thought I may have wet the bed.

    I was very shocked at the fact that it was in fact sweat. My bed is right beside my heater and so I passed it off thinking it was that. The sweating does happen a lot but not most nights. I will be seeing my doctor and addressing this to her. Thank you.

  4. Robbin says:

    I’ve been dealing with hot flashes and severe night sweats for years now ( approximately 5) I am now post menopause and the night sweats seem to have intensified. I have recently been diagnosed with a autoimmune disease, rheumatoid arthritis. I get swollen feet, ankles, hands etc. neck pain and migraines. I also have Trigeminal neuralgia, which is a nerve condition. I’m so tired ALL the time, and I believe if the night sweats weren’t there I would feel better all the way around. Need sleep 😴

    • Alli Truttmann says:

      Hey Robbin! Thanks for sharing your story with us, as I’m sure there are a lot of other sleepers out there experiencing similar issues. I think the more we talk about it, the better! We’re here to help with your sleeping needs and be a community of night sweats sufferers’ – so feel free to reach out anytime. My email is alli@wickedsheets.com should you ever have any additional questions. 🙂 Hang in there and have a wicked good day!

  5. Holly says:

    I have sjogrens and small fiber neuropathy and in the past, prednisone and methotrexate gave me excruciating hot flashes for months after I stopped taking them.
    Now, I am getting them again. They have been starting in the afternoon and then all night. It’s exhausting.
    Now, they are round the clock.
    I don’t know if it’s menopause or my autonomic system. My rheumatologist is a moron with sjogrens so I am in the process of looking for another one, and going to get bloodwork done by my gyno next week. I can’t keep weight on at all and am in constant joint pain.
    I had bloodwork for lymphoma last year due to the weight loss and hot flashes, but it came back normal.
    Now here I am again, suffering so much.
    I wish doctors knew more about sjogrens but they are really idiotic about how to treat a severe case of it, so I go it alone.

    • Linda Whitfield says:

      Holly, I feel you!! I also take methotrexate, and I have bad sweating spells too. I couldn’t imagine why I was having them because I’m 71, been thru that already! Thx ya you for posting!!

  6. Jacqueline Hall says:

    I, too, have the above. My consultant has moved to another hospital; he diagnosed me with Sjogrens Raynauds and Schelerdorma disease. The new rheumatologist says I have fibromyalgia? I think it’s because a lot of older doctors don’t really know what lupus is. #nightsweats

  7. Mary Jean says:

    My night sweats mostly started after I had all 4 wisdom teeth removed in 1979. Hugh swelling with pain and so with Temporal mandibular joint syndrome was prescribed Valium with some relief. Treated with different mouth appliances for malocclusion and as a palate expander for 4 years while continuing on Valium. In 1985 had excruciating neuralgia with numbness and double vision. Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Valium changed to klonopin. Pregnant in 1987 and immediately stopped klonopin.
    In 1989 had twins. Developed severe chronic sweats more cold and clammy than hot flashes. Preceding all this and during treatment for temporal mandibular joint syndrome developed paroxysmal tachycardia with frequent PVCs. Went back on klonopin in 1992 due to increasing anxiety. “I’m not nervous my body is”, was my mantra over the next year until I developed cognitive decline with an ADHD.
    But was able to work as a nurse for the next 5 years. In 1998 I went to a psychiatrist due to depression. She said she could not treat me until I got off the klonopin. I had at this point been on and off benzos for the last 20 years. My current dose was 1mg 3x a day. I weened off over one month which was too fast and created a lot of challenges. We’ll see…

  8. Seana says:

    I have Hashimotos thyroiditis, a diff auto immune, essentially causing hypoactive thyroid. I’m also having night sweats. And my leg temperature is way up there. Every night it the same. Cold arms hot legs – it sucks.


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